Who abandoned the cart? Your customer or you?

Where marketing is concerned, omnichannel and retail seem to make perfect bedfellows, given the boom in e-retailing globally. Not to be left behind, India has embraced the trend with such significant players as Flipkart, Amazon, eBay India, Snapdeal, and many more – all of them attracting consumers in droves. And so, here’s this first article in our omnichannel series focusing on e-retail in India and the many opportunities and challenges it entails.

The Economic Times reported recently that the number of online shoppers in India is expected to exceed 100 million this year. At the same time, the “rate of cart abandonment in India is 51 percent,” amounting to $10 billion in lost revenue per year. So who’s really abandoning those shopping carts?Leaving aside operational issues such as payment modes and charges,if you’re not doing enough to win back these drop-offs, recover those lost-cart revenues, and earn these straying consumer’s loyalty – the answer could actually be ‘You’.

You could follow the current hygiene framework by sending a follow-up email promoting the items in the abandoned online cart or take a more creative omnichannel tack. Imagine a scenario, where you not only detect when this drop-off consumer enters a brick-and-mortar store—presumably to shop for items from the abandoned cart—but also push a mobile app notification with an irresistible, exclusive online offer for those same items.

It may not always result in a purchase,but with this pull marketing strategy you will in most cases grab the consumer’s attention and provide a good reason to go back online to shop again. That, in a very small nutshell, is the power of omnichannel marketing and its ability to create new experiences and better results.

Research also shows that conversing with consumers, educating them on products of interest, and recognizing them across every channel helps to personalize your communications, improve trust, and boost conversion rates. While more mature shoppers may see this as VIP customer care, the millennials in your audience most likely already expect this of you.

For example, when they click on a Facebook ad for a seasonal promotion, why stop at displaying a personalized campaign page?Take it one step further and delight them with a web or app notification pushed to let them know that one of their abandoned cart items is available as part of this current promotion.

These kinds of omnichannel interventions, in addition to creating better customer experiences, also yield deeper customer insights, improved brand exposure, and a reduction in operational costs. A truly robust omnichannel strategy, of course, would connect all sales channels—brick and mortar and online stores, kiosks, social media platforms, with your engagement models—to make customers feel individually important, valued, and part of the community.

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